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How to Make Schools Safer

By Jerry C. Cirino
September 17, 2023
On The Record

Editor's Note:
This originally appeared in the Washington Post on 6/15/2022 as, “When teachers are the ones with guns in classrooms.” 

In her June 11 op-ed, Christine Emba claimed, “Ohio Republicans’ proposal to arm teachers is an act of cowardice,” but she twisted the facts.

Ms. Emba claimed legislators would “force a teacher to pick up a gun.” No one is forcing teachers to carry guns. House Bill 99, now law, allows trained school personnel or peace officers to carry a weapon at school.

Local school boards may now protect children the same way we protect politicians, celebrities, banks, and, we suspect, newspapers.

Ms. Emba apparently doesn’t think children are worth protecting with guns. She prefers more gun regulation. How are strict gun regulations working out in Chicago? How did relying on 911 work out in Uvalde, Tex.? Ms. Emba suggested armed teachers wouldn’t stop shooters. But the Crime Prevention Research Center has documented 43 incidents since 2014 when a citizen with a gun stopped a likely mass shooting. Not one innocent bystander was shot.

Ms. Emba called the people behind this bill spineless cowards for choosing to protect our children with trained armed guards. That makes no sense. Unless she doesn’t care about our children. Just a radical agenda to strip our right to self-defense. She would sacrifice our children for politics. That is worse than cowardice.

Jerry Cirino represents Ohio Senate District 18